Video Games Are Not the Problem
Wal-Mart is removing the display of violent video games in its stores. There is no evidence that violent video games have any effect on violence in society. And I don’t think there ever will be. I play video games regularly and I promise you I have never at any time had any desire to shoot up a Wal-Mart.
This is a public relations move. They want to be seen as doing “something” even if that something has nothing to do with anything.
Some years ago, there was a movie called “They Might Be Giants.” It starred George C. Scott and Joanne Woodward. It’s premise is that the crazies might have a point. But that 1971 movie never envisaged the crazies in positions of power executing public relations strategies for the sole purpose of being seen to do something about a problem.
This is just a symptom of a larger problem. Logic, reason and experience seem more and more disconnected with our national life. There was a time when science told us that certain things needed to be done and we tried to do them. Now, if the science is inconvenient, a legislature will ban the mention of the research or its name or both.
Our current government is a slave to irrationality as long as that organizational stupidity is driven by campaign dollars.
And here we find our similarity, our guiding principle, money, the long green, the little greenback – the fly in our ointment. Money is the driving force in our hapless march to irrationality and destruction. It was the tobacco companies that taught us that evil can prevail simply by confusing the issue, buying their own experts, writing their own publications, and our energy companies continue the tradition.
Wal-Mart wants to be seen as doing something but not any something that would cost them money. So, they ban the displays of violent video games but not the violent video games. They point their finger of blame at video games while not discussing their weapon sales. They point the finger at violent video games while selling pro-gun t-shirts on their web site. They are willing to advocate as long as there are no costs. They are willing to reform just as long as they have to do just about nothing.